Myers has often been compared to Alanis because both have unique vocal styles and have a penchant for writing punchy angst-ridden tunes.
The alt-rock singer finished a short run of shows Monday night at The Echo, previewing songs from her upcoming sophomore album. Take Me To The Disco drops July 20 via 300 Entertainment, and Myers played eight of the 12 songs from the record. Myers launched into the set with the strength of 1,000 Khaleesis (Game of Thrones reference).
I’ve played my advance copy of the record at least a few dozen times and seeing the songs played live made me appreciate them that much more. Myers kicked things off with “Done”, a song that has her behind her trusty bass guitar. It also happens to be a song that Myers showcases her wide range — from deep bellows to an almost gasp.
Myers dipped into her 2015 album Sorry for the title track. “I’m back, baby” she shouted excitedly to much fanfare once she finished the song. Then she went back into new material with “Jealous Sea”, which featured Myers at her most eccentric. She flailed her arms as she threw her voice fully into the tune. It has a very minimal Nine Inch Nails production feel to it, with a chorus that has Myers coming up for air between bars.
The title track “Take Me To The Disco” got a big pop as it’s the latest single Myers has dropped in the rollout for the new album. It features a pretty piano line that complements Myers’ longing lyrics beautifully. “Tourniquet” is another new tune that has a dark feel to it. “Only love hurts like this / So tie a rope around my wrist, I’m losing I’m losing the feeling / You’re my tourniquet,” she sings in the chorus.
Myers then reached way back into her catalog for “Monster”, one of the earliest songs she wrote. I remember seeing her perform it at School Night around the time I moved to LA in 2014, not knowing who she was. I was standing behind the back bar and heard her shout the chorus and I got goosebumps. Years later she still has the same effect.
“Tear Me To Pieces” might be the new song that’s best captured live. Myers’ minimal vocals in the first few verses make way for her rangy chorus — especially the last one. “I know this love will tear me to pieces / I know his hands will dig up my secrets / It’s in your EYES-UH you FUCKING LIE-AR” she screamed, with a maniacal look in her eyes that is a staple of any Meg show.
All throughout the show, Myers seemed uncomfortable with her monitors. In between songs and sometimes in between verses, she shot a look towards the sound guy but he couldn’t seem to figure out what was wrong. From a crowd perspective she sounded amazing but I could tell she was struggling to hear herself. If the sound guy goes missing, I have a feeling the Meg Myers from “Desire” might have killed him.
My favorite song from the new album is “Some People”. It has a more lighthearted vibe to the production — more hopeful than dark. I think it could be a big Alt-Nation single. The songwriting is really crisp. “It hurts to love someone — someone like you / It’s getting hard to find the lie in your eyes / Your face is a story and I know every line / Trying to reach out but you’re glancing out of time,” she sings forlornly. The chorus is simple but punches you in the gut — “Some people stay, some people break, some people change sometimes.” Highly relatable and it put the crowd in their feels.
It comes back around to the Alanis comparison. New song “I’m Not Sorry” is Myers’ “Uninvited”. It’s a song you don’t expect to be a banger but then the production picks up halfway through the song and the singer sells out on the last verse — pissed off.
She then played “Desire”, the song that made people think Myers was the kind of girl you might have to get a restraining order against with its sinister lyrics. She then closed with “Numb”, the first song from her new album that she dropped. Its subject matter is about the trials and tribulations that came with being an artist on a major label.
Now with an independent label, it’s pretty clear Myers is doing things her way again. And with such unique talents, we really shouldn’t want it any other way. She’s back, baby.
She’ll be back on tour starting in September in support of the new record. That includes a September 15 show at the Observatory in Santa Ana and an October 17 date at the El Rey Theatre. You can find her full tour route here, as well as ticket links to both of those SoCal shows.
Photos by Justin Higuchi